Warm weather, beautiful scenery, delicious food and generous tax laws make Jersey a popular location for people looking for a new home or an investment property, but how easy is it to get an overseas mortgage for a house in Jersey?
In this article we’ll look in detail about the lending criteria for Jersey mortgages, how the process differs from in the UK, and how to calculate how much you might be able to borrow. We’ll also look at getting a mortgage in Guernsey, Sark and Alderney, and how a broker can help you get the best rates.
In this article:
- Can you get a mortgage for a property in Jersey?
- Qualification requirements
- Mortgage rules, lending criteria and deposit requirements
- How much can you borrow?
- What types of mortgages can you get?
- How to get a mortgage in Jersey
- Which lenders can help?
- Do you pay stamp duty?
- Can you get a mortgage for a property elsewhere in the Channel Islands?
- Speak to a broker
Can you get a mortgage for a property in Jersey?
The short answer is yes! You’ll need to meet your lender’s eligibility and affordability requirements, but it’s definitely possible. Jersey isn’t part of the UK, so you’ll need to apply for finance from a lender who has a presence there. One benefit however of getting a mortgage in Jersey is that all transactions will be in pounds and so you won’t have to factor in currency fluctuations.
The first hurdle however will be to establish whether or not you’re entitled to buy property on the island, as there are some firm restrictions in place.
Speak to an Jersey mortgages expert
Maximise your chance of approval with a specialist
As appealing as the idea might be, you can’t just turn up in Jersey and buy yourself a house – you have to qualify for the right to own property. This depends on your residential and employment status, and determines the types of property you’re allowed to live in and buy.
The entitled status is the top tier, allowing you to buy or live in any property. To qualify as entitled you need to have lived in Jersey for 10 years, either continuously if you weren’t born there, or in non-consecutive periods if you were.
The licensed status is a special status granted to ‘essential employees’ and allows you to buy a property as long as you live in it as your main residence. This status is linked to your job, so should you stop working as an essential employee then you will have to sell the house. This status is often granted to business owners relocating their business to Jersey.
Entitled for work
This status is given to people who have lived in Jersey for over five years or who are married to, or in a civil partnership with, someone who is entitled, licensed or entitled for work. Having the ‘entitled for work’ status allows you to jointly buy property with a licensed or entitled partner.
If you’ve lived in Jersey for between 3 months and 5 years but don’t fit any of the categories above then your status is ‘registered’. You won’t be able to buy property on the island, only lease specific registered, (unqualified), properties.
Mortgage rules, lending criteria and deposit requirements
Mortgages in Jersey work much the same way as UK mortgages, in that you’ll need to meet a lender’s eligibility criteria before you qualify for a loan. This will include factors such as your income, employment, age and the type of property you want to buy.
Lenders will also want to look at your credit history to get an idea of how reliable a borrower you are. It’s always a good idea to check your credit reports before applying for a mortgage to make sure you have a clear picture of the information held about you, and to give you the chance to correct any inaccuracies.
Deposit requirements for mortgages in Jersey through international banks can be generous. Most UK mortgages have a maximum loan-to-value ratio of 10% as standard, but there are options in Jersey to go up to 95% LTV, meaning you only need a 5% deposit. If you are able to put down more, then this does mean more lenders willing to consider your application with better rates available.
How much can you borrow?
You may find that affordability criteria is more generous in Jersey. In the UK, most mortgage lending is capped at 4 to 4.5 times annual salary, but HSBC in Jersey for instance will consider loans of up to 6 times your annual income. Talk to your broker if you’re interested in lenders with higher income multiples – they will be able to compare offers for you and help you find the best terms.
You’ll also want to consider what your monthly repayments might look like, and how comfortably these sit within your financial plans. Just because you can afford a large mortgage may not mean you want one.
To get an idea of what you might be able to borrow, try our Jersey mortgage calculator below. Bear in mind that this calculator is for illustrative purposes only. Get in touch and we can match you with a specialist broker who can give you more bespoke estimates.
Mortgage Affordability Calculator
Our affordability calculator can tell you how much you can potentially borrow from a mortgage lender. Simply enter your total household income below and our calculator will do the rest.
You could borrow up to
Most lenders would consider letting you borrow
This is based on 4.5 times your household income, the standard calculation used by the majority of mortgage providers. To borrow more than this, you will need to use a mortgage broker to access specialist lenders.
Some lenders would consider letting you borrow
This is based on 5 times your household income, a salary multiple you might struggle to qualify for without the help of a broker. This income multiple is not widely available to customers who are applying directly with a lender.
A minority of lenders would consider letting you borrow
This is based on 6 times your household income, a salary multiple you will struggle to get without a broker. Six-times salary mortgages are usually only available under very specific circumstances.
Get Started with an expert broker to find out exactly how much you could borrow.
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What types of mortgages can you get?
The types of mortgages available in Jersey are similar to the UK – primarily you’ll be choosing between a standard residential mortgage, a buy-to-let mortgage or a commercial mortgage if you’re looking to buy a property for a business.
It’s important to have a clear understanding before you start of what exactly you want the mortgage for, and which product is relevant for you.
How to get a mortgage in Jersey
Once you’re sure you want to go ahead, you’ll want to get the ball rolling on securing a mortgage. There are a few steps you can take in the first instance to make sure you get the best loan for you.
Make sure you’re qualified to buy property
We’ve already discussed broadly how eligibility is determined based on residential status and employment, but there are some more detailed criteria around qualification for very specific situations. Jersey also has a high-value residency (HVR) programme for high-net-worth individuals looking to relocate, so there may be other ways to qualify. Talk to a specialist to be sure of where you stand.
Find a broker specialising in Jersey mortgages
Mortgages in Jersey can be complex, and as a borrower you may have a complicated financial situation too, such as assets or wealth secured in a mix of international vehicles. Even very basic mortgage requirements will benefit from the support of a broker who has knowledge of and relationships within the local market. A broker can research and negotiate on your behalf and potentially save you thousands over the life of your loan.
Get in touch and we can match you, free of charge, with a mortgage broker who specialises in Jersey mortgages.
Get your paperwork in order
Property sales in Jersey can move quickly if everything goes smoothly, and you can help the process by getting all the documents you’ll need together in advance. This will include evidence of your income, such as payslips or business accounts, bank statements, proof of ID and proof of other sources of income. Your broker will be able to guide you on exactly what you’ll need.
Which lenders can help?
Because Jersey isn’t part of the UK, you’ll have to use an international lender to secure your mortgage. There are plenty of options when it comes to finding mortgage lenders, the trick is comparing deals and rates across providers to try and work out which one is right for you.
These options include:
- Skipton International offer 5 year fixed term mortgages with LTVs from 75-90%. They also have a 5 year fixed rate buy-to-let mortgage with a minimum LTV of 75%. There are currently no product fees on either product and an early repayment charge (ERC) of 5% applies.
- Santander International offers 2, 5 or 10 year fixed mortgages. They will consider deposits as low as 5% and you have the option to take a zero product fee mortgage at a slightly higher rate. ERCs are between 2% and 4% depending on the term.
- HSBC will consider mortgages in Jersey up to 95% LTV. They have a 2 year and a 5 year fixed option. HSBC gives preferential rates to existing customers.
If this sounds complicated, don’t worry. Using a broker means you won’t need to spend hours trying to compare the small print to work out the best deal for you – they will do all the research.
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Do you pay stamp duty?
Yes, you’ll pay stamp duty on house purchases in Jersey, and you’ll also be liable for Land Transaction Tax (LTT). The rate of LTT you’ll pay will depend on the value of the transaction, whether or not you’re a first-time-buyer and whether the property will be your main residence.
It’s important to factor in these costs, along with legal fees, mortgage arrangement fees and relocation costs when planning your purchase, as this can have an impact on what you can afford to borrow. A broker who specialises in Jersey mortgages will be able to calculate your stamp duty and LTT liability accurately.
Can you get a mortgage for a property elsewhere in the Channel Islands?
Yes, you can buy property and take out a mortgage for other parts of the Channel Islands, including Guernsey, Alderney and Sark. Sark is an interesting case as for 400 years it was subject to strict laws that meant property on the island was not allowed to be mortgaged. This only changed in 2021, and you can now get a mortgage to buy a home on the island.
Speak to a broker who specialises in Jersey mortgages
Because Jersey has strict and specific rules around taxation and property, it’s best to get expert guidance before putting in your mortgage application. Find a broker who has experience in the Channel Islands, and who understands how to get the best deals.
Give us a call now on 0808 189 2301 or make an online enquiry and we can assess your situation and match you with the broker that has the best mix of skills and experience for you. Our broker matching service is free of charge, so you’ve got nothing to lose by getting in touch.